Looking at the commercial cleaning services market, more than 3.2 million U.S. workers are currently operating in the industry.
Pre-COVID, the U.S. commercial cleaning and maintenance services industry was generating roughly $117 billion annually.
Facility service providers operating in the commercial cleaning company realm are a mix of mom-and-pop, mid-sized, and large corporate businesses.
Demand for cleaning professionals is scheduled to rebound as office buildings and other commercial work environments reopen.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, more emphasis is expected on overall cleanliness, sanitation, and disinfecting.
Commercial janitorial services will expand beyond regular cleanings such as restrooms, trash, carpets, and limiting dust and dirt.
Maintaining a safe environment will require cleaning crews to satisfy the highest standards to minimize bacteria, viruses, germs, and potential infection.
Creating healthy environments will challenge cleaners to more frequently disinfect areas of high traffic such as lobbies and elevators.
Other areas of emphasis include shared workstations, sinks and toilets in bathrooms, and reception areas for guests and visitors.
Cleaning experts estimate that expenses will rise for property and business owners in seeking to enhance disinfection to limit transmission risk and sick days by on-site tenants, employees, and visitors.
The Importance of Cleaning
Aside from ensuring good sanitation, having effective professional cleaning services may impact your property’s or office’s image. In many industries, the facility’s appearance is seen as a clear reflection of the quality of the organization.
Maintaining a proper image is often important for businesses that have customers or guests visiting the facility each day.
In today’s highly competitive business environment, managers are often working with fewer employees that are working longer hours.
Having an effective janitorial service team can result in increased employee job satisfaction and reduced costs associated with turnover.
Business owners and facility managers must remain aware of how employees appreciate a clean and organized work environment. Studies have indicated how an organized and well-maintained workplace setting translates to a better ability to focus and increase productivity.
Another consideration is whether owners and managers of organizations should delegate commercial office space cleaning to their existing staff of employees. First, it’s unlikely that the staff wants to assume these additional tasks.
Secondly, this strategy may be counterproductive, as it preoccupies the staff with other work unrelated to the core functions of their positions.
Lastly, in-house cleaners are not cleaning professionals and will likely not be effective in their duties.
Another driving force changing the commercial janitorial services industry stems from the rise in awareness regarding public health brought on by the pandemic.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have provided guidelines and standards for cleaning in public or work environments. Demand for hand sanitizer, hand-washing stations, and hand-wipes have all spiked.
Janitorial Cleaning Industries Serviced
While most likely looking at commercial cleaning services as about office buildings and office space settings, janitorial cleaning is also performed in a wide range of work environments.
A commercial cleaning crew may be called in for service during a special event. Common work performed by a commercial cleaning company includes power washing, tile and grout cleaning, furniture, upholstery, etc.
Medical and Healthcare
Health care facilities, including clinics, rehabilitation centers, and medical offices, strive for a safe environment that must adhere to very challenging wellness and sanitation measures. Often the occupants of these facilities are among the most vulnerable to bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens.
Retailers of all kinds must maintain a strong commitment toward ensuring their facility meets customer expectations, particularly in high-usage areas such as restrooms. In addition to regular cleaning, an ongoing schedule for cleaning and maintenance of carpet and hard floors is generally required.
Educational institutions are expected to have a healthy environment that is conducive to learning. This realm of operations is among the most scrutinized since the COVID-19 pandemic began, which places a priority on sanitation and disinfection.
Industrial properties and manufacturing facilities have tremendous safety concerns and are focused on maximizing overall productivity. Commercial cleaning services performed in these environments must be following safety standards and potentially challenging conditions. Experienced commercial janitorial services understand how to meet these industry-specifics parameters.
Post-construction clean-up is common in the professional cleaning services field. Whether new ground-up construction or just an interior renovation, debris, dirt, and dust must be removed and the area cleaned before turnover.
Sealing or waxing of flooring is often also required as part of the contractor’s delivery requirements.
Building Cleaning Tasks
Next, we will review the various types of office cleaning services that are often necessary for a commercial building or workplace. Further, we’ll look at how a cleaning plan is organized, such as based on how often a task must be performed. There are a variety of cleaning-related activities that are deemed as being daily requirements in most office space work environments.
While some of the common daily tasks involve the removal of all trash from the facility, along with cleaning of restrooms, the following are also often frequently performed by commercial cleaning professionals:
- Floors: Proper attention to floors is necessary for business environments for several reasons, particularly for the safety and maintenance of the material. The materials such as laminate, tile, vinyl, and other flooring materials need regular cleaning to preserve their appearance and lifespan.
- Carpeting: Businesses use carpeting for purposes including comfort, appearance, and noise reduction. Commercial cleaning companies will always perform regular vacuuming and should also be adhering to a regular carpet cleaning schedule.
- Disinfection or Infection Control: Certain businesses, particularly medical facilities, have heightened cleaning and sanitation standards necessary for maintaining a sterile environment to prevent infection transmission. Disinfection can take the form of manual wiping-down of high-touch surfaces, such as door handles and desktops and cabinet doors to high-tech electrostatic disinfection.
- Dusting: Work environments today contain a host of different electronic equipment that seems to always attract dust particles. Examples include computer monitors, desktop lights or lamps, stationary phone units, and others.
- Exterior areas: Commercial providers may be tasked with regularly inspecting and cleaning exterior areas of a facility. For example, parking lots, entryways, and exterior staircases. Retail businesses with a regular flow of customer traffic may prioritize these tasks.
What to Consider When Hiring a Building Cleaning Service
Property and facility management teams are often focused on a price quote when choosing a commercial cleaning service. This decision involves acquiring an ongoing partnership that will be trusted to provide important services that should represent a corporate asset.
The focus should also be centered on the quality of the janitorial cleaning.
Does the company hire, retain, and invest in the long-term quality of its cleaning personnel. The service provider should place a priority on proper training and development of its staff, as employee turnover is a common occurrence. Management of commercial cleaning services should also conduct proper background screening on potential employees.
The following are critical concepts you must assess before the solicitation of professional cleaning services:
Identify Your Cleaning Requirements
If you are considering a transition to a commercial cleaning company, you will need to specifically define your cleaning needs.
Walking through the facility with a representative of the cleaning experts will allow them to make comments and suggestions.
Completing a somewhat detailed list of cleaning requirements before meeting with prospective service providers is very important. Most facilities or office work environments have an existing scope of work to accomplish this.
Set Realistic Expectations
Those who are seeking to hire janitorial cleaning should have the highest standards and expectations. What are some reasonable expectations to have regarding a potential team of cleaning professionals?
Consistency is a reasonable expectation that involves delivering good work according to the schedule. The commercial cleaning company itself should have internal quality control measures to ensure consistent performance.
Management professionals should focus on service providers who encourage ongoing communication, feedback and offers responsive support. Another reasonable expectation is the cleaning crew will maintain a consistent level of professionalism.
What are the standards or best practices that a property or facility manager should expect from a commercial cleaning company?
You should expect the janitorial service team to deliver consistent cleanliness and be responsive to your concerns. The preferred mode or method of communication should also be determined, such as a phone call, email, etc. Safety standards are among the most important, as you must ensure the health and safety of the building tenants, employees and visitors.
Make sure that you reach some understanding regarding how performance will be assessed, such as conducting monthly inspections.
How to Find the Best Building Cleaning Service for Your Needs
Not all commercial building cleaning companies are capable of meeting and exceeding customer expectations. The top companies in the market have years of experience across various industries where they have consistently achieved results and adhered to the highest standards. The great commercial cleaning companies view their customers as partners, who they support in maintaining a safe, clean and healthy environment.
As a commercial real estate or facilities professional, you should expect your janitorial cleaning service provider to deliver timely service, responsiveness, and consistency.
Understand how the commercial cleaning services operate under the hood.
How do they view their clients, employees, and the nature of their operations? For example, the leading janitorial cleaning providers take their hiring process very seriously by conducting a thorough background screening. Training is performed when they join the organization; however, ongoing training and development are equally as important.
First, does the organization internally conduct employee reviews to determine if quality work is being done? These types of quality-control measures are a tremendous benefit by obtaining critical information but also empowering the cleaning crews.
Professional cleaning services also seek customer reviews – whether good or bad – on an ongoing basis to improve client service.
Learn About Their Experience
Each commercial building has some aspects that make the surroundings unique. You need to gauge whether the cleaning experts have sufficient prior experience in successfully performing similar work.
In addition to the years of experience, the firm has inquired about the experience levels of their management team, with particular emphasis on those who will be servicing your facility.
Lastly, it is equally critical to learn the janitorial background of the key proposed on-site employees.
Verify Requirements and Insurance
Be sure to always confirm that the commercial cleaning service is properly registered and licensed under applicable requirements and laws.
It’s equally important to ensure they are fully and properly insured to protect your interests in the event of a claim. Let’s review some of the different types of coverage that might apply:
- Liability insurance: General liability coverage protects an organization from an unexpected event. For example, a visitor or guest in your building slips on a wet floor that was just mopped.
- Worker’s Compensation: Service providers with employees are required to maintain worker’s compensation coverage. This is used for covering work-related accidents involving employees that result in injuries or missed time.
- Commercial vehicle insurance: Businesses may need to maintain automobile liability coverage for accidents that result during the scope of work-related activities. Commercial cleaning services often have supervisors or specialized cleaning crews operate a truck or van containing equipment.
- Umbrella policies: Typically reserved for covering catastrophic events, “umbrella” or “blanket” coverage is often purchased as an additional layer of protection.
Check Their References
When considering prospective janitorial cleaning companies, require a client reference listing with complete contact information.
In addition, property and facility managers should cultivate their references through colleagues, industry professionals, and even janitorial cleaning vendors.
This is a key part of your due diligence. Keep in mind that the company will generally provide you with a reference that they know will speak highly of them. Be cautious of any company that ignores your reference request or is unable to provide you with any.
The Servi-Tek Commercial Cleaning Solution
The team of dedicated, highly-trained professionals at Servi-Tek Facility Solutions delivers full-service janitorial services for properties and workplaces facilities of all types.
We take the time needed to identify the individual needs of your organization to achieve the highest standards and results.
We have well-established internal programs that ensure effective recruitment, training, management and quality control, and, most of all, client satisfaction.
We encourage you to contact us today to learn more about how we can help your janitorial needs.